How should you paint your rural retreat?

After saving up for so long, you managed to buy yourself that idyllic cabin in the woods.    

Thankfully, it's not the type of residency that attracts the type of demonic creatures you'd see in a teenage horror film. It's nestled among the mountains, offering you a perfect getaway for the upcoming skiing season, or is deep in nature surrounded by trees so you can escape city life.

As it turns out, it needs a little cosmetic work. While the foundation and essential components are still intact, the wallpaper and paint have grown a little tarnished. Before getting to work, you need to figure out what colours will create that rustic home atmosphere you're looking to create.   

Using the power of the sun  

First off, assess how much natural lighting the rooms throughout the house receive. The living room's sliding doors onto the deck may bake in the sun's rays for most of the day, while rooms near the rear of the cabin may only brighten during certain hours.  

If your country home is located in the Southern Hemisphere, the sun will rise and set toward the northern end of the sky during the winter months. So, dark colours such as Resene Brown Pod – a likely choice for someone interested in creating a traditionally rustic atmosphere – will actually appear brighter than you may expect.  

In contrast, southerly rooms may possess a cooler character – one that seems almost bluish. As opposed to using lighter pigments, choosing something with a strong saturation will make the room more pronounced when you apply it. 

What's your theme? 

Is this home away from home a ski cabin or a fishing retreat? A place to cruise the woods in quads or watch birds? The reason why you purchased this woodland house in the first place can have a profound effect on what it means to you emotionally. 

It's important to complement those emotions. If the activities you plan on doing while visiting this dwelling are generally relaxed, selecting a certain shade of green may be the best choice for you. It generally inspires a sense of harmony. Resene Bottle Green is one particular colour that may fit north-facing rooms quite well in this case. 

What about the ski enthusiasts of the world? If you and your buddies are looking for a weekend of adrenaline-fuelled fun, arriving at a cabin painted with something similar to Resene Clockwork Orange will set the mood for a day at the slopes. 

A stained finish can work very well to bring out the rustic feeling, and you can use one to rejuvenate everything from timber walls and furniture to rafters and cabinetry.

Tackling the wallpaper 

While the wallpaper may have looked pretty hip to the former owners back in the day, it doesn't really fit what you're looking for. The problem is, you need to figure out how to remove the wallpaper without damaging the plasterboard behind it. 

First of all, be aware of what you're getting into: removing wallpaper is anything but clean. Start off by taping plastic to cover the floor, giving yourself about a metre of coverage from the wall to capture the wallpaper you're removing. If necessary remove any nice furniture or decorations you may have from the work area. 

When it comes to actually tearing off the wallpaper, start at one of the corners and use a putty knife to lift it off the facing. Applying even pressure when you're pulling will make the job go much smoother. 

Once that step is complete and you've exposed the wallpaper backing, use a sponge or mop to soak it with really hot water. This will loosen the backing and allow you to scrape it away with either a putty knife or metal spatula. 

After every speck of paste is removed, you can begin sanding the wall. From there, you're all set to start priming and painting – creating the perfect atmosphere for your woodland getaway. 

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